Bradsell Backed As Blackbeard Scratched From Phoenix Stakes


Bradsell: favourite for the Phoenix Stakes | Tattersalls

Aidan O'Brien will rely solely on Little Big Bear (Ire) (No Nay Never) in his bid to win a record-extending 17th G1 Phoenix S. at the Curragh this afternoon after stablemate Blackbeard (Ire) (No Nay Never) was ruled out of the Saturday showpiece due to to allergies.

Last successful with Sioux Nation in 2017, O'Brien has won the Phoenix S. with George Washington, Holy Roman Emperor and Mastercraftsman in the past, and Little Big Bear is a 7-4 chance to follow in the hoofprints of those illustrious former Ballydoyle-trained stars.

However, the market is headed by impressive Coventry S. winner Bradsell (GB) (Tasleet {GB}), trained by Archie Watson and ridden by Hollie Doyle.

Unbeaten in both of his starts, Bradsell has not been seen since that memorable Royal Ascot triumph, but is rock-solid in the betting at odds of 6-5. 

The Richard Hannon-trained Persian Force (Ire) (Mehmas {Ire}), winner of the G2 July S. at Newmarket last month and second to Bradsell in the Coventry, also features among the five still standing for today's mouthwatering Group 1. 

Johnny Murtagh's Shartash (Ire) (Invincible Spirit {Ire}), successful over the course and distance in the G2 Railway S., and the Joseph O'Brien-trained Apache Outlaw (Ire) (Churchill {Ire}) completes the field.

Doyle is confident that Bradsell can maintain his unbeaten record and is backing the colt to shine at the Curragh this afternoon. 

Speaking to the Racing Post, she said, “The form of the Coventry has worked out exceptionally well, so hopefully he can take another step in the right direction.”

Doyle added, “He's unbeaten and is lightly-raced compared to the opposition, but he's very straightforward and his work has been solid up until now.”

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